Quilled Great Horned Owl
A tale of two quilled great horned owls…
A client contacted me several months ago to make her a great horned owl that was destined to be donated to a local organization. I thought it was a great opportunity to get some of my work on display in a high-traffic public area, so I agreed to the commission.
This was by far the largest quilling I have ever done. It is about 10×12 in size on an 11×14 background. It’s set inside a 16×20 shadowbox frame.
So let’s see…
I started off making just one owl. It was the first time I had seriously quilled since February when an injury forced me to put down my quilling tool. I had completed the Goddess Mandala the week before as a sort of reintroduction to quilling – to get the juices flowing.
I began the owl on the right first and I got to about this mid-breast area and decided that I didn’t like the chaotic look of the breast quills since I’d forgotten to kind of line them up and had just been plopping them in to make the color pattern look random. I didn’t think ahead to the fact that it would also make the grain of the feathers look random too. Oops.
So I ordered a new batch of paper (double the amount this time) and when it came in, I began the owl on the left. I already knew what I’d do different and this included putting fringe around the eyes and adding a contrasting color to the outside of each quill.
I also used graduated brown paper to form the breast area. I like the graduated paper but I didn’t think it matched the brown tones of the regular quilling paper that Quilled Creations sells. I wish it was less red and more brown. Oh well, you can’t have it all unless you cut it yourself and I’m not prepared to do that.
In the end, I think that for everything I don’t like about one, I like how that same part came out on the other. It’s pretty amazing how two identical quillings can turn out when they are finished.